Damascus, Syria

10 November 2014

Note to Correspondents - Statement by the Special Envoy for Syria on the United Nations Proposal for a Freeze of Hostilities in the City of Aleppo

The Special Envoy for Syria, Staffan de Mistura, had today constructive discussions with the Syrian President Bashar al-Assad and Syrian government officials on the proposals he put forth to the Security Council on 30 October 2014, which addressed implementation of all relevant Security Council resolutions, including SCR 2170 and 2178.

Mr. de Mistura takes note of the expressed intent of the Syrian authorities to work with the United Nations to identify common ground for implementing his proposal on incremental "Freezes", starting with the city of Aleppo, on the basis of the concept outlined in the Council briefing.

The proposed "Freezes" as envisaged by the United Nations are intended first and foremost to lead to a de-escalation of violence, starting from specific areas with a national impact, and allow for return to some normalcy for the civilians caught in the conflict. In this respect the city of Aleppo has taken on renewed significance. Ongoing diplomatic efforts would then also build on such an incremental freezing of military activities to arrive to a national all-inclusive political process.

The Special Envoy and his team intend to proceed now expeditiously on working out the modalities of a Freeze in Aleppo city, through further discussions with the Syrian authorities, and intensified consultations with all parties concerned.